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By GWEN SISSON
Be the first to bid on the elaborately designed trees, wreaths and Gingerbread Houses at tonightâ€™s Festival of Trees Holiday Party and Auction.
The Party and Auction will be held at 7 p.m. today at the Palmiero Center on the Mississippi State University campus.
Tickets will be available at the door at tonightâ€™s event that will include live music, eclectic local food, beverages, live auction, and the finale of the silent auction.
Jennifer Gregory, coordinator for the 2010 Festival of Trees, said tonightâ€™s Holiday Party and Auction will be an event to remember.
Tickets for the black tie optional event are $40 per person and $80 per couple. Tables of 10 may be reserved for $400.
The Holiday Party and Auction is a big part of the fundraising effort with Festival of Trees.
â€śAll of the proceeds go to the United Way of North Central Mississippi, so festival-goers and contributors have a chance to see their dollars really benefit this area through the United Way agencies such as Habitat for Humanity, the Humane Society, Brickfire, and many others,â€ť Gregory said.
Last year, the event contributed $33,000 to the United Way, and organizers are hoping to meet and exceed last yearâ€™s goal.
Organizers said Festival of Trees will not be open for public viewing throughout the day to prepare for tonightâ€™s party.
Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Greater Starkville Development Partnership Office, 200 East Main Street, Starkville; or the United Way Office, 1016G Louisville Street, Starkville.
Patrons may also e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve tickets in advance. Tickets will be sold at the door.
Advance tickets are also available for Saturdayâ€™s â€śCookies with Santaâ€ť event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Palmerio Center. Advance tickets are also available at the GSDP office on Main Street.